Even drivers who are very experienced at driving in bad weather can fall victim to a dangerous vehicle skid. Skids can happen during rain or snow, and they can easily end in a car crash without some quick thinking and action on the part of the driver. Here’s what you need to do if you find yourself sliding while driving.
Drive Safely Before You Slide
Avoid getting into a situation where your vehicle slides by driving slowly and carefully during bad weather. Keep your speed to 45 mph or less, and avoid breaking or turning sharply. This should help you avoid most dangerous situations on the road. However, if you do find yourself sliding, follow these steps to get back on track.
Don’t panic when you feel the vehicle start to slide. Making a sudden move can cause the skid to become much worse and lead to a serious accident. Keep your head so you can maintain some control over the car.
Don’t Use Your Brakes
You may be tempted to slam on the brakes, but this will only make a bad situation worse. Braking only makes slides worse and makes it difficult to correct for the slide since all the wheels on your car are not operating freely. Instead, take your foot off the gas and let the car slow on its own.
Turn into the Slide
Turn the front wheels of your vehicle in the same direction that the rear wheels are sliding. Make sure that you don’t overcorrect; just turn the wheel gently to bring the front and rear of the car back into line.
Head Where You Want to Go
Look around and decide where you want your vehicle to go. You may want to turn back into your lane and continue driving, or, if you are feeling shaken by the skin, you might want to pull over to the side of the road to catch your breath. Fix your eyes on where you want to end up, and then slowly turn the car towards it. Steer carefully towards where you want to go, and, when the car has stopped skidding, tap the brakes to bring yourself to a full stop.
If you’re unfamiliar driving on ice or snow, then avoid doing so if at all possible. The best way to prevent skidding in the car is to not get in a situation where your vehicle might slide in the first place.